Welcome to the Sweet Sixteen, SEC fans! There are only two Southeastern Conference teams remaining in the Big Dance - Florida and Kentucky. The top-seeded Wildcats will take on No. 4 seed Indiana tomorrow, but the No. 7 seed Gators will play No. 3-seeded Marquette tonight. Here’s what (and who) to watch for in this game.
No. 3 Marquette (26-8) vs. No. 7 Florida (25-10)
The Gators stumbled at the end of the regular season, but have found success in the Tourney. They routed Virginia and Norfolk State en route to the Sweet Sixteen, and will look to bring that energy and confidence into this game. They rely a lot on shots from three-point range, so if they’re on, that will be their go-to plan. If they struggle behind the arc, they may be in trouble. Marquette is a tough, aggressive team and they have Jae Crowder, the Big East Player of the Year. They feel they belong in the Big Dance and won’t go down without a fight.
The game tips off at 10:17 ET with coverage on TBS.
What to watch for: Both teams are pretty even in terms of points scored and allowed. The Gators average just over 76 points a game and give up 66. The Golden Eagles score just under 76 points eper game and give up about 66. It’ll be a hard fought battle between two teams who need to be watching for each other to make a mistake. It could come down to free throws and fouls, so UF and MU need to be on their toes.
Who to watch for: Marquette – Jae Crowder (17.6 ppg, 8.4 rpg, .504 FG%), Darius Johnson-Odom (18.5 ppg, 3.5 rpg, .451 FG%); Florida – Bradley Beal (14. 6 ppg, 6.7 rpg, .434 FG%), Patric Young (10.3 ppg, 6.4 rpg, .618 FG%)